Saturday, December 26, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas, Everyone!

Okay, I'm resolving to give up Chickfil-A waffle potato fries... completely. Those things stick like nothing else. ugh

I have been wanting to tell the world since Tuesday that I won a Dell mini laptop! ...but I decided to give it to my husband as a Christmas/Anniversary/birthday present, so I had to keep my "mouth" shut. heehee...what a great present it is! I'm using it to type out this blog.. it's soooo tiny.

10" screen... keyboard is compact and i keep typing the wrong

Christmas was great, made my first ever tamales, and they are edible! Great flavor but could have better-made masa. I'll work on it to perfect it.

Richard and Madeline (DH & DD) are outside painting her new twin bed in pretty pink and purple colors. I'm still getting over a bad cold, which is affecting what I can eat and what I can taste... don't you dislike it when you can't taste? Would I be a thin twig if I never could taste? I don't think so... its the act of eating and I am never satisfied by taste alone, so I doubt it would be a helpful tool in weight reduction - for long.

whatever the case, I'm going to go help paint for now. Have a very Merry Christmas!!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Leo Forecast by Holiday Mathis

LEO FORECAST 2010: You've suspected for some time that you are capable of much more than your circumstances have allowed you to accomplish. This year you blow past the barriers you made for yourself. Your fighting spirit helps you rise up against the oppressive influences of your past. You attack your projects with a new ferocity and succeed quickly where you once failed.

Money and Career: You'll develop your image as a leader. Your efforts will be characterized by an attitude of assertiveness, resourcefulness and creativity. You will learn to talk to colleagues in a way that honors, encourages and motivates them. Overtime or a side job brings in more money in January and March. Philanthropy opens professional doors. Get involved on a community level.

Love: The fire in your soul will ignite your personal life with passion. March brings a move that energizes many sectors of your life at once. Loving commitments will be made in June. Family additions come in November.

Personal Development: The environment around you enhances your beauty and attractiveness. You are just as industrious about creating a beautiful place to live (your physical body and your home included) as you are in other endeavors.

---Okay, so I think it's time to set goals and why not merge Mathis' ego-pumping forecast into the plan?

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Our picture, October 2009

My husband, Richard and I at the Improv to see Bobby Lee.

Tanita Body Scale Results

Okay... I have been gone awhile. Work had me stressin', school was in full tilt mode, my personal life was taking hits, and my health was going down.

wow... that is a lot. hmmm... worst habit to wind it's way back into my world? Television. Remember I was completely uninterested? Yeah, didn't last. Now, I find myself trying to gorge for no reason. Scheduled to see my lapband folks next week cause I'm scared I'm screwing up too much. Let my workout slack because my boss has been watching me like a hawk around here. She's the only thing that makes it irritating to work here.

Oh, well.

My weight got down to 242 for the Biggest Loser Competition and I was the winner of the program with a fat mass of 114.4 at the end. :D

I was in the hospital the day before Halloween for ingesting too much hard liquor...heehee, not funny.

I was in the hospital twice more since then when TWO kidney stones decided to come to the party. I am vowing to WALK on my treadmill during the next tv show I watch... hold me to that, please.

I am graduating with my BFA on Saturday! I am also starting my Master's program in January. :P Exciting as it is, it's stressful. I am trying to focus again on the non-food stress relievers and need a fill to help me focus. :D

Those are the quick catch up-kind of things you needed to know. Have a great week! I'll be back after graduation to tell you how I'm doing.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Tanita Body Scale

Okay, I wanted to post the Tanita Body Composition Analyzer results. These are from my two weigh-ins from the beginning of the Biggest Loser contest.


Body Type: Standard (I wonder who isn't standard?)
Gender: Female (I hope you knew that already)
Age: 34
Height: 5 ft 0 inches (It's okay, I like my men short too)
Weight: 263.0 lbs
BMI: 51.4
Fat%: 47.6%
BMR: 8047 kj
1923 kcal
Impedance: 302
Fat Mass: 125.2 lbs
FFM: 137.8 lbs
TBW: 100.8 lbs

DEsirable Range:
Fat%: 21-33%
Fat Mass: 36.6-67.81 lb

Weigh-in TWO
Height: 5 ft 0 inches
Weight: 252.4 lbs
BMI: 49.3

Fat%: 47.4%
BMR: 7853 kj
1877 kcal
Impedance: 323
Fat Mass: 119.6 lbs
FFM: 132.8 lbs
TBW: 97.2 lbs

Desirable Range:
Fat%: 21-33%
Fat Mass: 35.2-65.4 lb

Alright, now for the guide to WHAT THE HECK DOES THAT STAND FOR?

Fat% - The percentage of total body weight that is fat.
BMI - Body Mass Index...Desirable range is 18.5-24.9
Impedance - reflects body's inherent resistance to an electrical current.
Fat Mass - Total weight of fat mass in the body
FFM - Fat free mass is comprised of muscle, bone, tissue, water and all other fat free mass in the body.
TBW - Total Boday water is the amount of water retained by the body.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Biggest Loser Article!

Hey, the article is out! I see the picture and wow! I'm still pretty round! Haha, not for too long, I mean heck, I've gone from a size 9 round jeans (if you shop Right Fit at Lane Bryant) to a size 4 round! I don't know what actual size that is though... do you? lolz, they like to keep you in the dark.

Okay, today is a lot better than yesterday!

The picture should load in a larger window for you to read when clicked. Let me know if it doesn't.


Monday, September 28, 2009

TLC Lindora's Morning Message

Has anyone signed up for the 10-week TLC by Lindora program? I signed up yesterday and I did learn something today. First, what a ketostick is, although I can't imagine wanting to buy this product. Second, a wealth of information regarding headaches, dizziness, carbs and hunger after surgery. So I have included what I read in this morning's "message" from the site.

Are you feeling hungry? If so, have more healthy protein servings from your protein list. As always, avoid high sugar or high fat liquid foods such as milkshakes or smoothies. You may need to plan a protein snack between meals. It's always a good idea to keep some handy. Choose lower carbohydrate snacks if you are reaching the high end of the range for ketosis and monitor your hunger closely as it could be a sign that you need an adjustment.

Have you had any headaches? Some people experience headaches when they attempt to keep their carbohydrate intake too low, so be sure to have at least 50 grams, but not to exceed 100 grams, of carbohydrates per day. Don't wait too long between meals. Caffeine withdrawal can also cause headaches, so if you choose to decrease your caffeine intake, do it gradually! Another cause of headaches is a low sodium (salt) level. Bouillon cubes contain a good amount of salt, so try having one or two cups of prepared bouillon a day. Another reason to add salt is if you are feeling lightheaded or dizzy, especially when standing. People who don't have high blood pressure may need to add salt during the Weight Loss phase.

Are you feeling any muscle weakness or cramping, or general muscle fatigue? These symptoms can be a sign of low potassium. Please read about potassium in the Phase One Weight Loss chapter. Most people doing the program report that they feel best when they take three (or more, if needed) over-the-counter potassium tablets every day in addition to their vitamins. Be surer to follow the recommendations from your surgeon regarding additional supplements. You can purchase potassium at most drugstores, health food, and grocery stores, or through We want you to feel "great" during your program, so be sure to pay attention to what your body is telling you.

Scope for a Monday

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22). A sense of belonging will be healing for you today. Your willingness to be a part of the group helps you fit right in. You'll be included to exactly the degree that you want to be included.

I hope this is true, but I wonder if work will get in the way more than it will provide the means...

Sunday, September 27, 2009

One Goal

I've been thinking I should show off a driving force behind where I know I'm headed, physically I suppose.

I have a picture I look at from time to time that used to be a good motivational tool, but now I don't need as much. I still want to resemble her when it's all said and done though. I don't know how reasonable that goal is since she is in high school forever more.

That girl was me. I remember looking at that photo once upon a time and not seeing a beauty. Boy, was I blind. I actually think I may even be better looking than her someday soon...


Saturday, September 26, 2009

My First Fill

Had my first fill yesterday, and the worst thing was that I attended the Vietnamese Association's Mid-Autumn festival and couldn't eat a thing. Felt a little rude, actually.

I guess I was somehow nervous because they had to test my blood pressure three times. Nurse was saying that it was 144/95 or something. I have never had high blood pressure, so I wondered about that.

I went in for the fill and they mentioned i was "wide open" when I drank the barium for the x-ray. I'm not exactly sure how "filled" I am now. They were saying numbers like 5-6 so I'm not sure if that's where I am now.

The nurse had me lie on the table and she prodded a bit for my port. She said I would feel the poke and a stinging, but I didn't notice a thing.
Anyway, the second time I took the barium it went through slowly and the technician noted that a little went back up.

The women in the room with me were remarking on how much weight I've lost, as if it were unusual, actually. They kept praising me, so I thought they might be schmoozing me a little bit. I mean, since pre-op date I've lost 54 pounds and overall I've lost 69 pounds.

Chron Scope

My chron scope today...

LEO (July 23-Aug. 22). Being kind takes no effort for you -- it's just who you are. An observant friend will point this out along with more of the invisible habits you are not so aware of. It feels nice to be noticed in this way.

It's nice to hear that. I wasn't always kind. I think it took years of humiliation and defeat, being ignored by others helped me become a more talented thinking machine. haha

Contemplation is my past time.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Biggest Loser

Yesterday I started The Biggest Loser Challenge at my college. This is going to be fun... I think. Of course, it is not supervised workouts or a structured eating plan like on the show. Merely a weekly weigh-in and contest between a few good people who signed up.

My new International friend, Abhinav has signed up for the challenge and a friend (acquaintance, actually), Shine is signed up too. Both Abhi and I need to slim down but Shine is already very slim. I think he's interested in losing a few more pounds and it's fun to compete, right?

I stepped on the Tanita Body Composition Analyzer and it spit back my weight, BMI, Fat%, BMR and the desirable ranges... yeah, those aren't close numbers as you may have guessed =P

As a result, I have done the leg press for the first time in this gym today, plus I did standing lat pulldowns to get ready for pullups, I did 30 girlie push ups, lateral raises, and tricep pull extensions. When I stand up at my desk now my quads are so sore! I love it.

Here's the picture I have turned in for the challenge!
I have been milling around the 260's this month (no fill last month) so on Friday I have my first fill. I'm so ready for it, baby!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Gym Visits & Omelettes

Man, work is really stressing this week.

On the plus side, I get compliments almost daily... people love me in my teal & black shirt. The niceties are coming from girls and guys. I'll see if I have a pic of it saved on this laptop.

My back started pinching on me yesterday and I think maybe it's connected to using the ball in the gym to do my crunches. I will stick with the floor for a little while and see if it improves some.

I need to be careful in the gym, don't want to go overboard. I love the sensation of lifting the weight, so I try to do as many machines as I can and free weights daily. The best limit I have is that I attempt it on my lunch hour, making it difficult to do anything for too long.

I've been driven crazy at work with new daily deadlines over budget issues over the whole last month. The latest one handed down this afternoon for close of day tomorrow. Not going to make my back any happier. It also feels like I'm looking up the same information day after day. Oh, well... maybe it won't go on much longer. My prayer is that my boss is happy with the amount of money she's granted for our department after we meet with the higher ups next week.

Other than that, I'm starting to read the portion assigned to me by my group in Modern Art. I have two chapters to read and summarize by the end of the month. That's okay. I have loaded images onto a disk I need for another class and I'm starting an art project for my body of work pieces for that class too. grrrr.... so much to do...


I spoke with Tina from True Results today about becoming a vegetarian and how I should get my protein then. Her response was beans. If I eat those several times a day, I'll lose friends... i'm positive! lol I must credit a guy in the gym with some helpful information as well. Shine Lin, he's a Grad student in Financial Management... and body building buff, answered my questions knowledgeably for a vegetarian that doesn't like to eat vegetables much. Anyway, Tina also said to try a protein powder to sprinkle on my food. She said I could find it at HEB in the health section. I'm going to check things out this weekend.

Also, Shine and I were talking about eggs and then omelets and he said that he had tried to make them after research and has failed miserably. I have tried to research them because he said that and have discovered there are lots of bad videos about this subject. I'm going to buy a few dozen eggs and try it out this weekend if i have time... lol

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Where I'm At


I thought I was doing okay, so I did not take the first fill... now I'm not really losing. I've kind of hovered in the mid-260's since...

bummer? yep. However, I was given the go ahead to start weight training, which I did the Monday following my non-fill appointment. I'm working all my muscles and I couldn't be happier about it. I'm still fitting into smaller clothing, and I love that. I will patiently wait for my next fill date...

and not eat out so much. during the week I'm sticking to my 4 ounce meals (have been) of chicken or fish and veggies... I do usually add a 2% slice of pepper jack cheese for deliciousness.

Anyway, I started losing again, so maybe it was mostly because I was weight training again after so long...

Friday, September 11, 2009

...took an unscheduled break

I have been so busy since my last blog post. I may try to do one once a week until the end of the semester. Things were pretty bad last month, but this month is starting off busy and full, and I am so happy for it.

I will try to blog an update this weekend, probably when I'm on a break from writing my paper that's due Monday...:)

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Nice Things

Well, Friday is my first appointment for a fill and the first time to visit with my surgeon again. Yesterday and today I did experience what I thought must be hunger, so I suppose I'm on track for a fill.

Nice things that have happened recently:

I had to take a link off my watch because it was too big.
I can fit in pants that are two sizes down from my original size.
I was able to tolerate heels for a day.
I can get down on one knee without needing a tow truck to get back up.
I can sit on the floor cross-legged without my circulation cutting out on me.
My confidence is high and I'm flying with it.

Friday, August 21, 2009

That Crazy Girl

I was a rambunctious, gullible and “crazy” girl until I graduated high school. Then I started eating more often and moving much less. I slowly went from an extroverted, life of the party type person, to an introvert. The more I gained, the worse I felt, the more I tried to lose pounds the less it worked.

I’m losing that introvert now, more quickly than she probably desires.
I’m not eating to control feelings anymore, which may be the root of the problem I’m experiencing.

All these things were gone until I started losing so much weight:
adrenaline shakes (I get real shaky "performing" in front of people)
Impulsive nature and boldness.
activity level (I mean hell, I didn't know what this was until recently) All of a sudden, I'm making time to join in on school activities, even when I'm spent.

Oh, and I'll always be gullible.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Bland Chicken Makes for a Great Addition

Okay, this month there was nothing better than having lapband and my period together. I'm serious folks. I was barely hungry at all. I could hold off on my 3rd meal for quite some time.
It was so funny and cost effective this week too.

The reason is that last weekend we went out to eat three or four times and I had leftovers of course each night. On Saturday evening we went to the new local China Wok so I could try it out. Problem there being that I had to re-evaluate the menu for a lapbander that does not want trouble, either with sticking or weight gain. I chose plain chicken with veggies and a bowl of hot and sour soup.

I sipped the soup and ate a few ounces of the chicken and veggies. Not great tasting, kind of bland. Well, I decided since the soup was a bit thick, I would load the rest of the chicken into the bowl. I have had four ounces of that for dinner every day this week and now I'm out. :(

This way, I had the delicious taste of hot and sour soup with a bonus of soft chicken thrown in. I'm tossing around the idea of becoming something of a vegetarian with carnivorous tendencies... is there such a thing? Frankly, I don't see how I might accomplish this anytime soon. :)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

What Are You Eating?

I am about four weeks out from surgery now and I'm just interested in knowing what some of the band old-timers eat on a daily basis or at a meal or two.

I'm still weighing my meals religiously, having only 3 and one protein shake daily. Anyone do anything different?

I have also been able to refuse (and even be disinterested) in my vices: popcorn, coke and chocolate.

The Muscle Milk Chocolate shake does help with the last one. :)

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Another Day Another Dollar

This is a very busy week at work and I haven't really had time to post, or the energy. We have had back to back events Monday and Tuesday for new International students and to top that I do actually have lots of work to complete.

Today, for the first time in I don't remember how many years, I wore a shoe with a small heel. Amazing, right? It was a pair of cute sandals I got 75% off, and I wore them to work. I did experience some rubbing on the second toe of each foot, so I put tape over them... worked well.

I also felt a bit taller... but my back is aching and maybe they are the reason why. I've decided to hell with pain, I want to lose faster and more efficiently, so I'm going back to the gym starting tomorrow.

My next task to tackle is learning to dance y'all. I really want to and don't know how to incorporate it ... except maybe a few steps after work and on sometime on the weekend. It will be harder starting next week because my classes will begin.

News on the lapband front... this is the first time in my life that I have ever lost weight while on my period. I mean, sure I have maintained before, but lost this amount? Never. I love it.

I'm so grateful that my mom and dad paid for the surgery for me, I'm really losing and feeling better every day.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Another Reason for WLS

I've been thinking about getting some "nice" shoes, which means I want something that will look nice when I start wearing capris and well, want to wear something besides the manly pair of women's confort shoes I wear now.

Here's the main problem: I suffer from Plantar Fasciitis. (Yeah, I know. I was clueless) Here's the information you want to know.

The Plantar Fascia is a wide band of fibrous (stringy) tissue which runs along the bottom (sole) of the foot. This band of tissue is attached at the heel bone and extends forward to the base of the toes. The Plantar Fascia helps to hold the foot arch together and serves as a shock absorber during activity. When there is an over-stretching of the Plantar Fascia a condition known as Plantar Fasciitis may occur.

Possible Causes of Plantar Fasciitis:
This condition may be caused by the following:*

Improperly Fitted Footwear – Wearing shoes that are too tight and do not provide the appropriate foot arch support or allow for the proper range of motion of the entire foot may be a contributing factor. Sudden switches in footwear (such as abruptly changing from high heels to flats or boots to athletic shoes, etc.) may also bring on this condition.

* Over-Pronation (“Flat Feet”) – is the leading cause of Plantar Fasciitis. With Over-Pronation, during walking the arch of the foot collapses under the pressure of the weight being placed on the foot. The collapse of the foot arch causes the Plantar Fascia to be stretched away from the heel bone where it is attached.

* High Foot Arch – An unusually high foot arch may be a factor.

* Excessive Weight (Obesity) – Too much weight on the foot from either obesity or pregnancy may be a factor.

* Increased Physical Activity – A sudden increase in physical activity may bring on this condition.

The items in bold are my main issues. I bought my current work shoes in December 2008 and they are still comfortable! My brown pair are actually quite nice, but I settled on the black for comfort. Now that I'm losing rapidly I think I will stop in at The Walking Company and see if they have something nice I can afford.

I got the above information from the Comfort Shoe Shop web site. To find out more information, please visit the web site.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

34th Birthday

Today is my 34th birthday!

I have been getting compliments on how I look all morning, mostly before anyone knew it was my birthday! It feels great!! Here is a picture I took minutes ago using my cell phone.

I put on a watch I purchased through Avon a year ago and it is loose! I swear that thing always fit like a casing on sausage before today. I may not be able to tell the weight is coming off visually, but i can sure see the changes in how things fit on me and I'm processing the scale numbers as they rapidly diminish. I'm so happy today! Thank you, God.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Roses to the Sweet

Tomorrow is my 34th birthday! Time does fly...

Last night my husband presented me with an absolutley breathtaking vase of roses, with a card that read "I will love you until the last pedal drops." First, I was perplexed and amused by the conditional sentiment and misspelling of petal. But then I realized that the flower dead center was a nice fake rose, whose petals will never fall.

Aaaawwww, sweet.

Sit & Be Fit

Since my lower back pain started with continuous stress to the feet, my doctor prescribed the workout provided by Mary Wilson on Sit and Be Fit. If you are familar with PBS at all, you have probably run across this show at least once. I was not thrilled at this advice because I've laughed at that show before. I mean, what kind of workout is that, really?

My doc also wrote "Inactivity is your enemy" on the notes she gave me. While my back pain is ebbing into my day as I type, it was almost 100% absent this morning when I woke up.

Maybe because I did the Sit and Be Fit workout last night? This is probable. I also had a foot massage before bed. I wonder if that contributed. I will get to test how well the the exercise makes me feel tomorrow morning because I know I won't be getting a foot massage tonight.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Lower Back Pain Kills Me

Did anyone else who had lapband have lower back pain? In April, I started walking on the treadmill at least 30 minutes for 3-4 days a week and then I started noticing pain in my lower back. It grew gradually worse and by the end of two months I gave up the exercise.

The pain may be connected to a pinched nerve or strained nerve (so the doctors say), and it probably involves the feet because I have plantar fasciitis and 2 heel spurs. Then again, those things might not matter and it is just the amount of weight torturing the back, the leg (which is sometimes numby and uninterested in doing activities) and the feet.

Anyway, I was wondering if anyone had something like this and if it got better as you lost weight. please say yes.

Yesterday evening was not so fun because i was trying to sit and watch Harry Potter in IMAX and I was twisting and bending all night long. I did have a little fun though. my husband had one of those movie size bags of M&Ms and he dropped one right into my hand. I pretended like I was going to eat and enjoy it but he snatched it back. It was cute & funny.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

New: Lowest Weight I Can Remember

Today I am 280.5 pounds, almost five pounds less than when I found out I was pregnant FIVE years ago! I must have been hovering on 285 lbs for at least a year before that. I'm very happy, but for some reason this week I have the blues.
Maybe this is just part of my regular cycle, but we'll see.
I have been tired the past few days, but not hungry. :)

Yesterday was the first day I had any type of real food, and it was 4 ounces of scrambled eggs. Today I made a little menu for my day.
Breakfast: 2 ounces of scrambled eggs and 2 ounces of mashed up melon, although I couldn't get all the melon out of the blender.
Lunch: I had baked fish (2 ounces) and 2 ounces of low fat, low calorie tuna salad. Unfortunately, I followed the directions for the microwaved fish and it came out hard instead of flaky.
I plan on trying canned chicken with mayo for dinner. I still need to have today's protein shake and I'm going to try Muscle Milk Lite: Chocolate flavor. They're regular chocolate is delicious, so I'm hopeful the lite one will be good too.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Send in the Clowns

I was watching So You Think You Can Dance, maybe it was one of last week's performances and a nostalgic feeling swept over me because of the song Tyce Diorio choreographed.

When I was a young girl, my parents collected fragile porcelain dolls and kept them on an etagere in the front entry. I don't know which occaision we were shopping for but I think we were at Almeda Mall looking for a nice doll for my mom. My dad must have had a preference for one and he asked me to choose one (I doubt my choice had much to do with what he bought).

I loved the harelquin clown with his young face, white clown suit & black hat. He had a little tear to make him appear sad too. The best thing was that he played Send in the Clowns. It was calm and sad, but so beautiful.

My dad bought that clown for my mom and I used to pull that clown down and play it whenever I happened upon him. I was probably 12 years old when my sister was running down the hall and lost control, crashing into the etagere. My favorite clown now had a hole in his head and I rescued him for myself for a few years. He's long gone now.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

First Taste of Creamy Tomato Soup Post OP

I had a bad recovery day Friday. Thursday night I couldn't sleep because my back ached, my stomach was sore, my arms hurt from the IV hunt, and my leg hurt. I called the surgeon's office at 1 a.m., but by 3 a.m. I was finally falling asleep in my living room armchair. I had to be up by 7 a.m. to set up the garage sale, which was killer.

When I saw my PCP that morning she said I have been doing too much and I need to rest more this week.

After the garage sale I made a trip to the grocery store with my mom to get the soups I needed for week 2 of my liquid diet. I pureed a vegetable soup and was surprised to see what the blender can do. :)

I decided to have tomato soup for lunch and it was the most fabulous thing I had tasted in years. Thanks, lap band! I even saved some of it for dinner.

Later, I got into bed and rented Twilight. Nice love story I suppose, but I had issues with the way the character Bella comes off as such a weak female. Not the role model I truly want for my daughter. I haven't read the books, but they are on my list.

I also saw Knowing with Nicolas Cage. That had some fairly good scenes in it and I do enjoy Sci-Fi/Fantasy movies.

Anyway, I plan on relaxing today after this garage sale... looking forward to rest.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

IKEA Misadventure

I have spent the morning working in the garage for tomorrow's sale and I am beat. I am not hungry in the slightest, but I should probably have a protein shake anyway.

Yesterday went well until I found myself stuck at IKEA because my car wouldn't start. There was nothing with me to drink that I trusted other than water and I was becoming hungry. I had already watched my husband and daughter share a plate of chicken tenders and fries! I was carrying Goldfish crackers in my bag and they are a snack I often indulged in... yum yum...

but I didn't cave. Heck no! Ruin this band? Regurgitate my food? Heck no! Nothing tastes THAT good.

Today is day 6 out from surgery and I feel pretty good. Not really hungry, more of a small feeling of missing out on food. My focus has already shifted from what's breakfast, what's my snack?, What's lunch? etc., to What can I get done right now? What can be done later? Since I literally can't eat and know I'm not allowed to eat, I don't have it weighing on my mind anymore...


Tuesday, July 28, 2009

4th Day Out

I feel fairly good today. I have been able to get down one whole pint of water, almost an entire protein shake and I'm currently sipping Crystal Light pink lemonade.

I am having some kind of strange symptom...reflux, gas maybe? It comes & goes. When it does come I get pain in my shoulders. I spoke with Connie, a nurse with true results and she said for me to try the GasX strips you let dissolve on your tongue. I guess that's my next task.

I am trying to get things done around the house, it can't be all pampering myself 24/7, now can it?
Can't it?

Monday, July 27, 2009

3rd Day out

Today is the 3rd day out from my surgery. I woke feeling stronger and attempted to do some of the things I normally do as wife & mother around the house. I was able to drink my protein shake today, took well over an hour. Then I had what I thought was phlegm because I was coughing (ouch, right?) When I swallowed though, it tasted of regurgitated food. ugh. I almost finished a 1 pint water bottle so far today... have to work my way up to 4 of them daily.

My breathing strength comes and goes and I probably should have called the surgeon's office. I will in the morning.

I tried to put away laundry that Richard did over the weekend and then I was exhausted and took a nap. When I woke up I thought it was the next day already. Richard came home early and we relaxed in the living room.

TMI, I had my first bowel movement. (that's always good news after surgery)

Sunday, July 26, 2009

First Day Out

Today was exhausting. I woke up thinking I was having chest pain over my heart, but when I moved to get out of bed, the pain quickly moved up to my shoulder area again.

First, I went to Target with Richard & Madeline to get a weigh scale for my food and some groceries for the week. Almost everything for me was a liquid, just the jello is slightly solid. I held onto the cart and walked very slowly.

Richard wanted me to possibly get out of the house today so he could work uninterrupted in the garage. (cleaning it out)In the afternoon I called my mom and asked if she wanted to take Madeline somewhere, again Richard insisted I should go along too.

I ended up at Cheddars for lunch with my parents and Madeline. Weird, huh? I mean, I'm only two days out from surgery, way too sore, and can't eat or drink anything at the restaurant. Well, I'll tell you I wasn't hungry at all, even when I smelled that good lookin' barbecue at the table over one. My mom told me again that she was proud of me for putting myself through this misery so that I can feel better and possibly live longer for my family.

Madeline got a Cookie Monster, which is a large cookie a la mode. My parents both had regular meals & I sipped a EAS Myoplex vanilla shake. Maybe got a whole ounce into my stomach.

After the lunch my parents decided they wanted to take me to Avenue and Lane Bryant to look for clothes that will fit me within the next month. I did end up getting a few things, some pants that will need to be hemmed and a belt (first time I've had one of those in awhile).I still haven't finished this water bottle I started the day with. I have to get up to drinking four of them in a day.

I am trying to stomach jello right now. The nurse had said to hold it in my mouth until it dissolves.

I'm pretty exhausted, I think I will go take a nap.
I am feeling better today. Sore in the shoulders still, and of course the incision sites, but my fever is gone & was able to pass some gas (TMI?) and I feel like I want to get out, just not sure where to go.

I am still not drinking much because I'm afraid I'll end up regurgitating, but at least I'm not hungry in the slightest.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

How I Came to Have Surgery at True Results

I tried to get approved for lap band in 2007 through True Results because I had lost the gallbadder and my foot broke right after that, from nothing more than walking on it. I was frustrated.
I had an evaluation at that clinic and then the insurance claimed there was an exclusion and I couldn't afford the surgery on my own. I tried again in 2008 when my husband and I had new insurance. No good, exclusion.

I started having extreme nausea that came in waves, I was also lightheaded that made me slow way down at work. I had a colonoscopy and upper endoscopy on February 27, 2009. This showed a hiatal hernia. Unfortunately, I did not know then that could be the key to having insurance pay for most of the surgery. I was just not feeling well at all and kept visiting my PCP. When I wasn't getting great results from these visits, no answers, I decided to take care of myself by going to the Fitness Zone located in the student services building of the college.
I went 3-4 days a week and walked on the treadmill for 30 minutes. I noticed a small backache setting in soon after I started. It escalated painfully when I went on my period and I wasn't able to sleep. I had a full work up done (about 10 tests) for my doctor - and everything was within the normal range she said, except my triglycerides were high.
I continued my workouts and started to add weight training back into my life.
Next, I requested help with my growing back pain and was told the Xrays were normal and she suggested I see and orthopedic surgeon. Frustrated I continued my workout and consulted with my podiatrist. He had suggested to me that the plantar fasciitis and two heel spurs were probably causing the back pain. Soon my feet were hurting non-stop, 24/7 and I gave up the workouts all together. I mean, hell I was only walking!

I told my husband I was having so much pain walking and afterward (was even given a temporary handicap parking pass) that I was ready to give up & eat whatever I wanted-just let it all go.
A picture of my mom with Madeline & Oprah Winfrey in wax.

He didn't like that idea, so then I started researching the lap band procedure again. When I mentioned to my mom how desperate I was and how willing I was to give up, she worked out way to pay for the surgery in cash, which is a greatly discounted rate. I could feel my depression ebbing back into my life and I was in no position to argue with her.

When my depression starts I begin to imagine people I love being hurt in horrific ways. These vivid images are so awful, I hate to repeat anything I see.

I chose Dr. Ken Hollis because I knew he was affiliated with Southeast Memorial and True Results. I visited with him on July 7 and he suggested exercise would not be enough for me. (I already knew that). My mom and husband accompanied me to the appointment so they would have an idea about what to expect. They scheduled my surgery for two weeks away and told me to get started on the pre-op diet.

Diets I've Tried

Things I've tried to lose the weight.

Regular diet, watching calories
Jenny Craig
Weight Watchers
Slim Fast
saw a food therapist
Something else normally prescribed for migraines-side effect is loss of appetite
Weight Watchers again
Meal Delivery - lost my gallbladder when the weight came off to fast.
Synthroid - (for hypothyroidism) still take it. It's supposed to help. but I guess not so well.
saw a surgeon for Gastric Bypass in 2002, he thought I wasn't ready to do it & my company also decided to excluded WLS earlier that month.
tried limiting caloric intake and stepping up to exercise... only I did too much and ended up not continuing
I joined 24 hour fitness, but after awhile I noticed the staff wasn't really as friendly as they made out.

Nurse Called

I just received a call from the nurse who gave me bruises. He apologized again, but he was really calling to check how I feel. He wanted to make sure that I'm keeping my liquids down and to hear about my level of pain. I told him I was just reading over the Book One for the lap band post-procedure, learning what are normal signs of discomfort and dangers to be wary about.

I am also trying to breathe more into the Airlife machine. He said he thought my level of breathing sounded okay. So onward, I shall go.

Motto for the Road Ahead

Today's Menu: Take it, or Leave it!

There is the motto I will be following for awhile now. I'm just starting week one, which is all liquids. Wish me luck! Come on back and follow my journey through lap band land.

Day of Lap Band Placement

When I weighed in at the center yesterday morning, the scale said I was 292, losing a total of 17 pounds since July7. The surgeon visited me and thanked me for losing so much, he wasn't worried about getting around the liver now. I was at the True Results facility from 10:30 a.m until 4:49 p.m. When I woke up at about 2:40 p.m. I think my body was going into shock, but the nurse there helped me calm down. I have a bad back and had been lying on it from 12:30-2:30, when I woke in recovery. I couldn't stop moving-trying to be comfortable and
my teeth were chattering uncontrollably.
The nurse gave me Demerol and my body calmed. I have abdominal soreness, which is better this morning, but I do have a bit of pain in both shoulders from the anesthesia.
The nurses had to stick me three times looking for an IV vein.nice bruise forming. They also give you a shot of heparin in the side (I didn't really feel it) to prevent blood clotting in your legs. I also wore compression stockings. I don't have any regrets.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Big Band Day

Today is my Big Band Day. In a few hours I will head over to the surgery facility with my husband. Before that, my doctor has requested I bathe with a special antibacterial soap called hibiclens.

I know what to expect going in because it is a laparoscopic procedure and I had one in 2007. The nurse said there are a few entry points so I guess I'll have a few more healing areas than I had before.

I have not eaten or had water since about 10:30 last night, so I expect to be hungry in a couple of hours. (it's been nine already).

Wish me luck! I'll write again when I'm feeling better.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

How it began...

Traumatic things happened to me caused by someone I loved and then another person I didn’t, and then from one I liked.
I met my husband soon after the last bit of trauma and we became friends. Started dating in 1994 and I guess I began to mirror his proportions at meals and it sure didn’t help that we ate very late at night many times.
I began putting on weight in 1995 and never really stopped. I saw clothing sizes grow very slowly but couldn’t really see what I looked like from another person’s point of view. My man thought I was beautiful no matter how big I became. (I’m lucky there.)
So that’s how it started.

More to come, follow me down memory lane…

It’s really amazing how your outlook on life can change almost daily when you’re a woman. Maybe it is just the makeup of me, but this has been a loopy year so far – as coasters go, and recently I have been very optimistic about the future.

Here I am in a family photo taken July 21, 2009.

You see, I was given the go ahead to have lap band surgery by my mom. No, my mom isn’t a doctor, but she does have excellent credit. I won’t go into details yet, but it has been a long road up seeing doctors, being turned down by various insurance companies, going on and off diets.

I saw my surgeon on July 7, 2009, started my pre-op diet the next day, saw the evaluation nurse on July 9, and I’m scheduled for surgery tomorrow at 10:30 a.m.
Finally, I will have the tool I’ve needed all along.
I’ll keep you posted, follow me into Lapband Land.